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Telephone Etiquette

Your Voice Is You

Everytime you make or receive a telephone call at work, you are representing yourself and your department. The impression you create will be a lasting one. Make sure your voice and mannerism reflect that you are alert and at your best!

Answering the Phone

Answer promptly on the first ring, if possible.

Identify Yourself

Answer by giving the department name and your own name. Example: "Telecommunications, Joan Smith speaking." The caller should then identify himself/herself and give a reason for calling. Pronounce the caller's name distinctly and repeat it frequently. The sweetest music to a person is the sound of his/her own name!

Be As Helpful As You Can

To avoid unnecessary customer delays, handle as much of the transaction as you can yourself.

Leaving the Line

If you need to leave the line to obtain information, it is courteous to give the caller the option of waiting or being called back. You might ask, "Would you prefer to hold?" or "Shall I call you back?" If the caller waits, give progress reports every 30 seconds or so. This lets the caller know that he/she has not been disconnected or forgotten. When you return to the line, thank the caller for waiting.

Caller Identification

In order to announce to the receiver of the call who is on the line, it is permissible to ask, "May I tell Mr. Smith who's calling?" This will allow the receiver of the call to be prepared to talk with the caller and address him/her directly by name.

Technology Services, Tulane University, New Orleans, LA 70118 -- TSNOC: 1-866-276-1428 -- help@tulane.edu